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Any recommendations for a good Windows email client that supports IMAP well and runs as a portable application (i.e. you can run it from disk without installation)?

I've been using ThunderbirdPortable, but it's IMAP support is very flakey (lots of problems with attachments from an IMAP server) and I really need to find something better. It's important that it be portable because I'm constantly rebooting into alternate boot environments and want to share the email program among all of the various Windows instances.

I don't need a lot of functionality -- something akin to the iPhone mail application is fine, I don't need (or particularly want) lots of features.

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closed as off-topic by Tog, Kevin Panko, harrymc, Moses, Mokubai Jun 17 '14 at 20:47

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Since you don't need a lot of functionality and you already have a network connection, you could set up a simple webmail solution. No need to carry around your client anymore.

I like roundcube:

This project is a free and open source webmail solution with a desktop-like user interface which is easy to install/configure and that runs on a standard LAMPP server. The skins use the latest web standards such as XHTML and CSS 2. Roundcube includes other sophisticated open-source libraries such as PEAR, an IMAP library derived from IlohaMail the TinyMCE rich text editor, Googiespell library for spell checking or the WasHTML sanitizer by Frederic Motte.

If you can't set up a permanent webserver for any reason, you could stick to the portable version of xampp.

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An interesting approach, but really heavy. Even using xampp lite means over 100 MB installed onto a server somewhere that has to be maintained. I'm still hoping for a smallish native client but haven't found one better than Thunderbird yet (which I'm still having a lot of trouble with). Thanks for the suggestion though! – Scott Bussinger Sep 9 '11 at 15:03

Here are some suggestions, although you may have already read this. Also are you using a public email provider (gmail yahoo live etc.)

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Thanks, that was a good link! This is for an in-house email server. There were several options listed there I hadn't heard of. None of them are blowing me away with awesomeness. Sylpheed and Popcorn don't support HTML email. iScribe doesn't handle HTML very well. I couldn't get Koma to negotiate the SSL connection. The Bat!, and FoxMail don't appear to be portable. DreamMail doesn't support IMAP (which is a pity because it's a nice looking app). That leaves Emailaya; it's a bit odd on the screen, but seems to work so far. – Scott Bussinger Jun 30 '10 at 23:46
I've also eliminated IncrediMail (horrible reviews), Alpine (no HTML email support), Mulberry (looks like a dead project), Eudora (now just a derivative of Thunderbird), Reach-a-mail (dead), and Pegasus (limited HTML support, not portable). I'm experimenting with Opera and it's looking promising. – Scott Bussinger Jul 1 '10 at 0:25

Portable Thunderbird is the portable version of one of the best email client around, and comes with IMAP and multiple-accounts support!

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Did you miss the second paragraph where he said he's already using this and isn't satisfied? – Ryan Bolger Jun 30 '10 at 20:57
As Ryan pointed out, Thunderbird is what I'm trying to get away from. It really handles IMAP attachments very poorly. – Scott Bussinger Jun 30 '10 at 22:21

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